View Poll Results: Acne since turning vegan?

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  • No

    8 40.00%
  • No, my skin got better after going vegan

    6 30.00%
  • Yes, but it was just temporary

    1 5.00%
  • Yes, permanently

    1 5.00%
  • Other, please specify

    4 20.00%
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Thread: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

  1. #1

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    Default Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    I know most people's skin improves but mine has got a lot worse. I was vegetarian for a year and my skin was fine (not perfect) but after I turned vegan it got a lot worse and is leaving scars. I've been vegan for a year and a half now and I'm covered in red marks left from the acne.

    I've spoken to one other person who said her skin got worse since turning vegan so I just want to check if there are any others.

    I have one theory that whatever hormones which are in milk (which everyone claims are so bad) were actually doing me some good. Maybe I was deficient in these hormones in the first place and now that I don't drink milk, I'm missing out on them. Don't get me wrong, I'll never go back to drinking it but I'm hoping there's another way to sort this out.

  2. #2
    Ruin
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    I don't think the hormones in dairy do anyone any good.

    What kind of diet do you have? Do you eat lots of fats? There's lot of things that can make acne flare up. Stress is a biggie.

  3. #3

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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    Why do you say the hormones can't do any good? Everyone's bodies are different. So say I lacked oestrogen... the oestrogen in milk may help this. I'm not sure but it makes sense to me.

    I can't think of any other reason. I don't eat a lot of fats and am generally very healthy. A typical day consists of something like:

    Breakfast: Muesli, branflakes, flaxeed and fruit with soymilk
    lunch: Wholemeal Sandwich
    dinner: stir fry with brown rice

    It's pretty much the same diet as I had when I was vegetarian but with soymilk at breakfast instead of dairy and I no longer have a glass of dairy milk with dinner which I had everyday before I turned vegan.

    The acne started exactly the same time as I turned vegan and it just seems like too much of a coincidence to be anything else.

  4. #4
    Ruin
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    I was talking about the growth hormones etc in milk.

    It might be your body purging itself of any nasties. Do you drink lots of water?

    If you can't find out why its popped up and you can't get rid of it maybe a visit to the GP is the next step.

    Then again bodies do weird things for unexplainable reasons.

  5. #5
    Pilaf
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    I had severe acne as a teen, before being vegan. I got rid of it before going vegan by using Acutane, which was a very powerful medicine. I'm not sure how going vegan would have affected it if I never took the medicine.

  6. #6
    Manzana Manzana's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    Quote vik85 View Post
    It's pretty much the same diet as I had when I was vegetarian but with soymilk at breakfast instead of dairy and I no longer have a glass of dairy milk with dinner which I had everyday before I turned vegan.

    The acne started exactly the same time as I turned vegan and it just seems like too much of a coincidence to be anything else.
    It may be that Soy milk does not agree with you (as opposed to dairy being good for your acne)... try changing to oat or rice milk and see what happens. As with many nutritional remedies they need some time to work though so give it at least a month...

  7. #7
    cobweb
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    it might be a coincidence, my skin got really bad in my 20s but is now clear most of the time. During the time it was particularly bad i went back to vegetarian from vegan for a variety of reasons, then went back to vegan. Neither thing helped, i believe it was hormonal problems that caused my breakouts, and stress that made them worse.

    I'm very careful to drink lots of water now, which helps.

  8. #8
    fortified twinkle's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    Quote cobweb View Post
    it might be a coincidence, my skin got really bad in my 20s but is now clear most of the time.,.
    Ditto. I got quite bad acne in my mid to late 20s, (more than 5 years after I turned vegan) after I went through a prolonged period of being quite stressed out (trying to do an MSc, and not doing very well!). It's pretty much okay now beside the odd spot here and there.
    "If you don't have a song to sing you're okay, you know how to get along humming" Waltz (better than fine) - Fiona Apple

  9. #9

    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    Quote Manzana View Post
    It may be that Soy milk does not agree with you (as opposed to dairy being good for your acne)... try changing to oat or rice milk and see what happens. As with many nutritional remedies they need some time to work though so give it at least a month...
    That's a good suggestion. I'm almost 19, a couple months vegan. I had a slight flare-up of acne (but then again it hadn't completely gone away before going vegan, so there's no established cause/effect), and now it's pretty much gone back to normal, even though I don't drink enough water. But I don't drink soymilk most of the time - mostly rice milk, almond milk, and hemp milk. So you could give that a try.

  10. #10
    Abe Froman Risker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    Quote vik85 View Post
    I know most people's skin improves but mine has got a lot worse.
    Where'd you get that from?

    Veganism itself has nothing to do with the skin condition you mention.

    Read wikipedia's page on reasons for it - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acne#Causes_of_acne
    "I don't want to live on this planet any more" - Professor Hubert J. Farnsworth

  11. #11
    Relocation shiny2008's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    acne is a real trouble for my skin recently...

  12. #12
    buttons's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    My acne level is the same as before. I don't see veganism isn't a panacea.
    Not that I'm suggesting that that's what you were suggesting

  13. #13
    Manzana Manzana's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    Quote Risker View Post
    Where'd you get that from?

    Veganism itself has nothing to do with the skin condition you mention.

    Read wikipedia's page on reasons for it - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acne#Causes_of_acne
    Your article mentions:

    "Several hormones have been linked to acne: the androgens testosterone, dihydrotestosterone (DHT) and dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS), as well as insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-I)."


    Cows milk contains IGF-1 (as well as hormones):
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milk

    "Since November 1993, with FDA approval, Monsanto has been selling recombinant bovine somatotropin (rbST)--or rBGH--to dairy farmers. Additional bovine growth hormone is administered to cattle in order to increase their milk production, though the hormone also naturally fosters liver production of insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF1). The deposit thereof in the milk of rBGH-affected cattle has been the source of concern; however, all milk contains IGF1 since all milking cows produce bovine growth hormone naturally. The IGF1 in milk from rBGH-affected cattle does not vary from the range normally found in a non-supplemented cow.[43] Elevated levels of IGF1 in human blood has been linked to increased rates of breast, colon, and prostate cancer by stimulating their growth,[44][45] though this has not been linked to milk consumption."

    ...so maybe that is where that comes from.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    Hi there, I am new to this board and your post caught my eye. My acne flared right up and has been bad since I went vegan from veggie 6 months ago. Anyway, other stuff has happened like my thyroid has fallen and I am anaemic. I put it all down to soya - I was drinking about 2litres a day to get my protein cheaply. Bad idea. I also wonder if the hormone like effects of soya have affected my acne as my periods have also been so much more painful. I think, hormonally speaking, soya can help some women and hinder others. Anyway, I have switched to rice milkand I am trying to take careof myself as well as animals by buying 'proper' food, so we will see what happens!

  15. #15

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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    Hi, I have been reading all your posts. There are different reasons and causes for acne. If you went from vegetarian to vegan you might be missing on the probiotics you used to get from dairy products but dairy is so detrimental to health that I strongly suggest you find a dairy free probiotic. It could also be that you are detoxing or that you have a hormonal imbalance. I have been vegan for a while and I never stop reading about veganism. As a vegan I know I have a responsibility to always be informed. You almost have to become a nutritionist not by obligation but because you want to give your body the best. I am a skin therapist and I myself experience some breakouts occasionally but listening to my body has become my expertise. I don't recommend soy products, I believe they have hormones just like animal milk and I believe it is very acid forming. My best advice is to read as many books as you can about plant base diets and to learn to listen to your body, try an elimination diet, this might gide you to the right place. Hope this helps!!

  16. #16
    Abe Froman Risker's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    ^ You have to be selective about what you believe though. (probiotics, detoxing, acid-forming...)

  17. #17
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    You almost have to become a nutritionist not by obligation but because you want to give your body the best.
    Hi, and welcome!
    Although living on a vegan diet has becoming a lot more mainstream over the last years, some non-vegans used to assume, many moons ago (and some still do), that if they would go vegan they almost would have to 'become nutritionists'.

    I always told - and tell - people that this is wrong, for a few reasons: One is that it's pretty easy to get an overview of what you need to pay attention to when living on a vegan diet - a lot easier than if they would keep living on a meat and dairy based diet - but the information people as vegans is of course different than the info meat eaters need.

    Link:
    Nutrient deficiencies more common in meat eaters than in vegans?

  18. #18

    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    I have never really had skin problems but I did observe something strange after becoming vegan. I became vegan in February 2011. I stopped taking vitamin D3 supplements and switched to D2 (I supplement D and calcium due due to having osteoporosis developed over years from conditions having nothing to do with veganism and it happened as an omnivore). Over the summer I rode my bike 7-10 miles per day to work and for leisure so I was exposed to the sun a lot. Now, I used to sunburn very badly as I am very fair and I would always "protect" myself by slathering on sunblock. But as a vegan, more aware of what I put on my body, I refused to slather animal based sunblock on me. Vegan friendly sunblock is not exactly cheap. I decided, since I was concerned about getting enough vitamin D and whether D2 would be absorbable for me with the bad press about synthetic D2, to not wear sunblock and get extra exposure to the sun for natural D3 and see what happened. I was still taking the D2 just in case. I made it through the entire summer without a single sunburn, and for the first time in years, I actually got a suntan! I almost never tan. I also had my D levels checked by blood test at the end of the summer and they were a healthy 70 (normal range is 30.0 to 74.0 nanograms per milliliter (ng/mL)). However, as Fall approached I noticed brown spots forming on my neck that spread to my chest and I was getting dull headaches. I stopped the vitamin D2 supplement for a month suspecting I was getting too much and the spots cleared up. I wonder if the higher amount of vitamin D I was getting from several sources protected my skin from sunburn. I know this has nothing to do with acne but I just thought I would mention it. Sometimes skin issues can come not so obvious sources.

  19. #19
    LouiseAbel's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    A lot of people say a lack of calcium can be the cause of bad skin, especially if it's hormonal. (Same thing for PMS - taking a calcium supplement is supposed to help all PMS symptoms including hormonal acne). I don't necessarily believe that vegans are lower in calcium but you'll know if that could be you. =)

    Hope it clears up.x

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    Try adding more fresh veggies (as opposed to cooked) to your diet, and try taking some vitamin D (or sitting in the sun).
    Also, zinc is really good for your skin. Saunas can be helpful for detoxing, which tends to help the skin also.

  21. #21

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    Default Since I went vegan, I have bad acne

    I went Vegan five and a half weeks ago and ever since, my acne has gotten out of control. What could be causing this? I eat lots of fruits, veggies, and whole grains. I thought this way of eating would improve my complexion. I tried switching from Soy milk to Rice milk for a couple of weeks and didn't see any difference.
    Last edited by Korn; Aug 21st, 2012 at 03:39 AM. Reason: This was the first post in a similar thread

  22. #22
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    Hi stripeygirl - as well as the other suggestions in this thread you might want to think about omega-3 oils which are meant to be important for skin. If you haven't already you might want to try adding something like flax oil or seeds to your diet. We have a few threads about omega oils on the forum. There is a (non-scientific) mention of their role in controlling acne here http://www.vegfamily.com/dietician-marty/acne-help.htm

  23. #23
    Pea-utiful... Peabrain's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    Yes my spots have definitely really flared up, but I don't think this is so much because I needed the hormones present in the dairy (and meat) I consumed, but because my body got used to being fed these, and needs to relearn how to balance them without the additional hormones... I have other hormone problems too, and most of my adult life they have gone up and down, whilst I was still a non-vegan. I wouldn't in any case go back to not being vegan, as no hormone issue is worth the suffering of another creature to me, but definitely I would try other things like reflexology/acupuncture/the oil cleansing method, and when I see my specialist in March I will be mentioning it.
    Last edited by Peabrain; Jul 24th, 2013 at 10:06 PM.

  24. #24
    Pea-utiful... Peabrain's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    Came across some info yesterday which may be interesting; apparently although in the UK it's against the law to give hormones to dairy cows, most of them are pregnant at the same time as being milked, so there would be a lot of hormones present anyway.

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    I have had breakouts for as long as I can remember.. Worse before my period, which I think is normal.
    Since going vegan it has actually been a bit better. I don't get those horrid, deep, boil type formations anymore.
    Also, I don't drink soymilk but I do eat soy products, but not everyday.

    Mind you, I eat a lot of vegetables and try to limit processed foods. I cook just about everything from scratch, so I know what's in my food.

    Lately I have started working out, and I read that exercising (enough to break a sweat!) helps rid the body of toxins and improve complexion.
    Also, I juice organic veggies in the morning and aim for a smoothie mid afternoon before work. I believe that helps my complexion look brighter.

    I drink tons of water too. I rarely have juice or pop or a glass of non dairy milk. It's always just water, water, water.

    I know I'd have clearer skin if I stopped wearing makeup all the time but I just can't.

  26. #26
    Pea-utiful... Peabrain's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    Just a lil update: after a couple of months using Evening Primrose oil for this and other hormones related issues, my spots have really cleared up! Yay! So might be worth trying for a long-ish period of time and seeing if it helps.

  27. #27
    Astrid660's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    ^Just using the primrose oil on existing spots or? I'd like to give that a shot!

  28. #28
    Pea-utiful... Peabrain's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    Sorry I'd not got back to you until now!!! I was taking a very high dose of evening primrose oil capsules (we have a company here called Vertese that does vegan capsules - I'm not sure if you do where you are but I'm sure there will be a similar company or you could use bottled oil)...

    I'd be willing to bet though, that using the oil as a facewash type thing may actually help, as bizarrely it helps your skin regulate oil production and gets dirt out of pores better, but I don't know if you'd have to mix it with castor oil as that is more drying and will stop skin being too greasy believe it or not... There's more about the oil cleanse method here: http://www.theoilcleansingmethod.com/

    Basically the reason I've taken the evening primrose as supplements is that I also had a fair few other hormonal problems... It's an omega 6, but an anti-inflammatory type, so you needn't worry about the omega 3:6 ratio.

    HTH

  29. #29

    Default Re: Has anyone got acne since turning vegan?

    I voted "other" because I've never really had acne. Not even as a teenager. Becoming vegan didn't change my skin at all (it's always been very nice).

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